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food, friends, boardgames...a good day

Yesterday started groggy:  weather radio went off at 5am, and again half an hour later, for a storm southwest of me.  The cats took that as a cue to walk all over me until I got up and fed them.  After much caffeine and sitting&blinking, I finally got moving.

I took the granny smiths and the orange marmalade that I did not use for pi day and made a vat of apple crisp.  Then I got started on the thing I wanted to try for an upcoming recipe contest:  Caribbean-style pizza.  The sauce contains - among many other things - carrot juice, lime, allspice and raisins.  Housemate got off work at 2; head-injury D arrived around 4, and the three of us taste-tested the pizza (topped with seasoned pork, onions, mango, anaheim chile, and cilantro) and declared it pretty darn good.  I can't think of anything I want to mess with tweaking, so this will be a one-off that I will post to the contest soon.

Then on to a game of Ora et Labora ("pray and work"), the Ireland variant.  It's a good game, with similarities to its siblings Agricola and Le Havre, but I think a little less taxing than both.  I think it's easier to do at least okay through a variety of strategies, but there's still plenty of challenge involved in getting things just so and optimizing one's score; that's preferable to the 3-hour games where you figure out halfway in that you've shot yourself in the foot, and then you spend the rest of the game trying to die with dignity.  Well, that's my review after playing it only once; I'm sure I'll manage to shoot myself in the foot in some future game.

Housemate and I each ended with 199 points, and D had 196.  I like it; I hope to play it again.  Little jelly jars or something similar are useful to hold the unreasonably large number of chits.

Speaking of pi day, I had leftover apples and marmalade because I'd changed my plan after buying groceries:  coworker D was on a restricted diet, and standard pie was not on the list.  So, I made mostly-vegan pies:  a pumpkin mousse (the "mousse" was tofu) and a carrot cream (a layer of carrots, raisins, and other things, topped by a layer of...cream/jello/paste...made of almond and coconut milk and other things).  No refined white sugar, but I did use honey.  The crust was a mix of ground nuts and a few other things.  Both were gluten-free except for the egg substitute in the pumpkin pie. 

Coworker D said they were both great.  I think his brain might be addled by the dietary restrictions; I thought they were okay but needed...well, sugar.  They are, after all, pies.
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